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Best No Annual Fee Travel Credit Cards of January 2020

NerdWalletJanuary 13, 2020

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NerdWallet's Best No Annual Fee Travel Credit Cards of January 2020

Our picks for

General travel

Wells Fargo Propel American Express® Credit Card

on Wells Fargo's website

Rates & Fees
Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

15.49% - 27.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% intro APR for 12 months on purchases and qualifying balance transfers

Recommended Credit Score
The Wells Fargo Propel American Express® card offers high rewards rates across a broad range of spending categories. Its bonus offer for new cardholders is among the best you can get for a $0 annual fee, and there's even a 0% intro APR period.

Pros

You earn 3 points per $1 spent on restaurants, gas stations, rideshare services, transit, flights, hotels, homestays, car rentals and eligible streaming services. All other spending earns 1 point per dollar. The welcome offer can slice a chunk off your next vacation cost: Earn 20,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in purchases in the first 3 months - that's a $200 cash redemption value And you get an APR of 0% intro APR for 12 months on purchases and qualifying balance transfers, and then the ongoing APR of 15.49% - 27.49% Variable APR.

Cons

Since it's an American Express card, you might encounter limited merchant acceptance outside the U.S.
  • Earn 20,000 bonus points when you spend $1,000 in purchases in the first 3 months - that's a $200 cash redemption value
  • $0 annual fee and no foreign currency conversion fee
  • Earn 3X points on eating out and ordering in
  • Earn 3X points on travel including flights, hotels, homestays and car rentals
  • Earn 3X points on gas stations, rideshares and transit
  • Earn 3X points on popular streaming services
  • Earn 1X points on other purchases
  • Select "Apply Now" to learn more about the product features, terms and conditions
  • View Rates and Fees
Bank of America Travel Rewards® Credit Card

on Bank of America's website, or call (800) 211-3740

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

16.49% - 24.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Purchases for 12 billing cycles

Recommended Credit Score
The Bank of America® Travel Rewards Visa® credit card is blessedly simple. You earn 1.5 points per dollar spent on all purchases. Redeem those points for travel, either by booking through the issuer or as a credit on your statement.

Pros

This card has one of the broadest definitions of travel, giving you more ways to use your points. You can also earn up to 75% more points if you’re a Preferred Rewards client. There's a nice sign-up bonus and a 0% APR period, too. And since it's a Visa card, you'll find broad acceptance overseas.

Cons

A flat-rate card means you don't earn bonus rewards for travel purchases.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5 points per $1 spent on all purchases, with no annual fee and no foreign transaction fees and your points don't expire
  • 25,000 online bonus points after you make at least $1,000 in purchases in the first 90 days of account opening - that can be a $250 statement credit toward travel purchases
  • Use your card to book your trip how and where you want - you're not limited to specific websites with blackout dates or restrictions
  • Redeem points for a statement credit to pay for flights, hotels, vacation packages, cruises, rental cars, or baggage fees
  • 0% Introductory APR for 12 billing cycles for purchases. After the intro APR ends, 16.49% - 24.49% Variable APR will apply
  • If you're a Preferred Rewards member, you can earn 25% - 75% more points on every purchase
Discover it® Miles

on Discover's website, or call (800) 347-0264

Rates & Fees

on Discover's website, or call (800) 347-0264

Rates & Fees
Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

13.49% - 24.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Purchases for 14 months and 10.99% on Balance Transfers for 14 months

Recommended Credit Score
The Discover it® Miles offers simple flat-rate rewards, gives you control over how big your new-cardholder bonus will be, and is the rare travel card that lets you redeem your miles for cash back with no loss in value.

Pros

You earn 1.5 miles per dollar spent on all purchases. Miles are worth 1 cent apiece when redeemed for statement credit against travel purchases or for cash back. The introductory 0% APR period is one of the best in its class. And you get Discover's unique sign-up offer: Discover will match ALL the Miles you’ve earned at the end of your first year, automatically. For example, if you earn 35,000 Miles, you get 70,000 Miles. That’s $700 towards travel! The more you earn, the more you get.

Cons

Discover's acceptance is limited internationally. If your travels will take you outside the U.S., bring along another card or two for backup.
  • UNLIMITED BONUS: Discover will match ALL the Miles you’ve earned at the end of your first year, automatically. For example, if you earn 35,000 Miles, you get 70,000 Miles. That’s $700 towards travel! The more you earn, the more you get.
  • Earn unlimited 1.5x Miles for every dollar spent on all purchases - with no annual fee.
  • No Blackout Dates. Simply pay for travel purchases like airlines, hotels, rental cars, and more with your Discover it® Miles card.
  • Miles Pay You Back. Easily redeem Miles as a statement credit for travel purchases. Or get cash.
  • Freeze your account in seconds with an on/off switch either on the mobile app or website to prevent new purchases, cash advances, and balance transfers.
  • Get your free Credit Scorecard with your FICO® Credit Score, number of recent inquiries and more.
  • Get an alert if we find your Social Security number on any of thousands of Dark Web sites.* Activate for free.
  • View Rates and Fees
Capital One VentureOne Rewards Credit Card

on Capital One's website

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

13.49% - 23.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Purchases for 12 months

Recommended Credit Score
The Capital One® VentureOne® Rewards Credit Card offers an unlimited 1.25 miles per dollar spent.

Pros

Miles can be redeemed for statement credit against travel purchases at a value of 1 cent per mile, with no restrictions on when you travel. There's a sign-up bonus, too: Earn a bonus of 20,000 miles once you spend $1,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $200 in travel.

Cons

The ongoing rewards rate is lower than what some competitors offer.
  • $0 annual fee and no foreign transaction fees
  • Earn a bonus of 20,000 miles once you spend $1,000 on purchases within 3 months from account opening, equal to $200 in travel
  • Earn 1.25X miles on every purchase, every day
  • Travel when you want with no blackout dates and fly any airline, stay at any hotel, anytime
  • Miles won't expire for the life of the account and there's no limit to how many you can earn
  • Transfer your miles to over 12 leading travel loyalty programs
  • Enjoy 0% intro APR on purchases for 12 months; 13.49% - 23.49% variable APR after that
  • See if you qualify for a better offer with Capital One:

Our picks for

Airline travel

American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp<sup>&#8480;</sup> Card

on Citibank's application

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

17.49% - 25.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

None

Recommended Credit Score
For occasional but loyal American Airlines flyers, the $0-annual-fee American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp Card is a cost-effective way to earn miles on everyday purchases.

Pros

The American Airlines AAdvantage MileUp Card earns 2 AAdvantage miles per $1 spent at grocery stores and on eligible American Airlines purchases, and 1 AAdvantage mile for every $1 spent on other purchases. It also offers a sign-up bonus, plus a discount on in-flight food and beverage purchases made with the card.

Cons

The card doesn't offer free checked bags, and its 3% foreign transaction fee could get costly if you frequently travel internationally.
  • Earn 10,000 American Airlines AAdvantage® bonus miles and receive a $50 statement credit after making $500 in purchases within the first 3 months of account opening
  • No Annual Fee
  • Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for each $1 spent at grocery stores, including grocery delivery services
  • Earn 2 AAdvantage® miles for every $1 spent on eligible American Airlines purchases
  • Earn 1 AAdvantage® mile for every $1 spent on other purchases
  • Save 25% on inflight food and beverage purchases when you use your card on American Airlines flights
  • The standard variable APR for Citi Flex Plan is 17.49% - 25.49%, based on your creditworthiness. Citi Flex Plan offers are made available at Citi's discretion.
Blue Delta SkyMiles&reg; Credit Card from American Express"

on American Express's website

Rates & Fees
Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

17.24% - 26.24% Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

Recommended Credit Score
The Blue Delta SkyMiles® Credit Card from American Express is an ideal option for Delta devotees who want rewards without paying an annual fee.

Pros

Earn 2 miles per $1 spent at U.S. restaurants and on purchases made directly with Delta, and 1 mile per $1 spent on other purchases. The card features a modest welcome bonus, plus a 20% discount on in-flight purchases in the form of statement credit when you use the card to buy food, beverages or audio headsets. Terms apply.

Cons

It doesn’t offer perks like free checked bags or priority boarding. Since it's an American Express card, you may face limited acceptance abroad.
  • Earn 10,000 Bonus Miles after spending $500 in purchases on your new Card in your first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • No Annual Fee.
  • Earn 2 miles per dollar at US restaurants.
  • Earn 2 Miles per dollar spent on purchases made directly with Delta. Earn 1 mile on every eligible dollar spent on other purchases.
  • Receive a 20% savings in the form of a statement credit after you use your Card on eligible Delta in-flight purchases of food, beverages, and audio headsets.
  • Terms Apply.
  • View Rates and Fees
The United℠ TravelBank Card
Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

17.49% - 24.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

Recommended Credit Score
With the no-frills United℠ TravelBank Card, you don't have to keep track of points or miles and how much they're worth. Instead, you earn "TravelBank cash," redeemable for United tickets on a straightforward dollar-for-dollar basis.

Pros

The United℠ TravelBank Card earns 2% back in TravelBank cash on airline tickets purchased from United and 1.5% back on all other purchases. The card also saves you 25% on in-flight food, beverages and Wi-Fi on eligible United flights. Plus, there's a sign-up bonus and no foreign transaction fee.

Cons

You won’t get free checked bags or priority boarding. TravelBank cash is redeemable only via United Airlines, and since you're not earning miles (which can at times be worth more than a penny each), you won't have the potential to snag outsize value for certain fares.
  • Earn 2% in TravelBank cash per $1 spent on tickets purchased from United.
  • Earn 1.5% in TravelBank cash per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Enjoy 25% back as a statement credit on purchases of food, beverages and Wi-Fi onboard United®-operated flights when you pay with your United TravelBank Card.
  • TravelBank cash is easy to use. $1 in TravelBank cash = $1 when used toward the purchase of a United ticket.
  • Your TravelBank cash accumulates in your United TravelBank account on United.com.
  • $0 Annual fee
  • The information related to the United℠ TravelBank Card has been collected by NerdWallet and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card.
Barclaycard The JetBlue Card Credit Card
Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

17.49% - 26.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% on Balance Transfers for 12 billing cycles following each balance transfer that posts to account within 45 days of account opening

Recommended Credit Score
With the JetBlue Card, you can earn easy rewards on everyday purchases in addition to airfare. And you won’t have to worry about blackout dates once you’re ready to redeem them.

Pros

The card earns 3 points per $1 spent on JetBlue purchases; 2 points per $1 spent at restaurants and grocery stores; and 1 point per $1 on all other purchases. You’ll also enjoy 50% in-flight savings on cocktail and food purchases, and there's no foreign transaction fee. Plus, there's a sign-up bonus.

Cons

The card doesn’t offer a free-checked-bag benefit.
  • Earn 10,000 bonus points after spending $1,000 on purchases in the first 90 days
  • Earn 3 points per $1 spent on JetBlue purchases, 2 points per $1 at restaurants and grocery stores and 1 point per $1 on all other purchases
  • Points awarded in your TrueBlue account don't expire
  • 50% inflight savings on cocktails and food purchases
  • No foreign transaction fees
  • Chip technology & $0 Fraud Liability protection

Our picks for

Hotel travel

Chase Marriott Bonvoy Bold Credit Card

on Chase's website

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

17.49% - 24.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

Recommended Credit Score
The Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card offers bonus rewards on purchases made at Marriott Bonvoy hotels, but also on other travel purchases. You'll also earn automatic Silver status and the valuable perks that come with it.

Pros

Earn 3 points per $1 spent at qualifying Marriott Bonvoy hotels, 2 points per $1 spent on other travel purchases (from airfare to taxis and trains) and 1 point per $1 spent on everything else. The automatic Silver status benefit includes perks like priority late checkout, a 10% point bonus on stays, free Wi-Fi and more. There's also a sign-up bonus.

Cons

Unlike other hotel cards with annual fees, you won't get a free night's stay every anniversary. Also, bonus categories are somewhat limited compared with other cards.
  • Marriott Bonvoy Bold™ Credit Card from CHASE® with no annual fee!
  • Limited Time Offer! Earn 50,000 Bonus Points after you spend $2,000 on purchases in the first 3 months from account opening.
  • Earn 3X Bonvoy points per $1 spent at over 7,000 participating Marriott Bonvoy hotels.
  • 2X Bonvoy points for every $1 spent on other travel purchases (from airfare to taxis and trains).
  • 1X point for every $1 spent on all other purchases.
  • Receive 15 Elite Night Credits annually, qualifying you for Silver Elite Status. Restrictions apply.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees.
  • Earn unlimited Marriott Bonvoy points and get Free Night Stays faster.
American Express Hilton HonorsTM Card from American Express Credit Card

on American Express's website

Rates & Fees
Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

17.24% - 26.24% Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

Recommended Credit Score
The Hilton Honors American Express Card earns bonus rewards on Hilton stays and in common everyday categories. You also get automatic Silver status. Terms apply.

Pros

Earn 7 Hilton Honors bonus points per dollar spent directly with a hotel or resort within the Hilton Honors portfolio of brands; 5 points per dollar at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations; and 3 per dollar on all other purchases. It also offers a welcome bonus: Earn 75,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points with the Hilton Honors American Express Card after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership. Terms Apply.

Cons

It doesn't offer an automatic award night every year, and point values are lower than they are in several other award programs. As an American Express card, acceptance abroad may be limited.
  • Earn 75,000 Hilton Honors Bonus Points with the Hilton Honors American Express Card after you use your new Card to make $1,000 in eligible purchases within the first 3 months of Card Membership.
  • Earn 7X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases charged directly with a hotel or resort within the Hilton Honors portfolio of brands.
  • Earn 5X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for each dollar of eligible purchases at U.S. restaurants, U.S. supermarkets, and U.S. gas stations.
  • Earn 3X Hilton Honors Bonus Points for all other eligible purchases on your Card.
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees. Enjoy international travel without additional fees on purchases made abroad.
  • Enjoy complimentary Hilton Honors Silver status with your Card. Plus, spend $20,000 on eligible purchases on your Card in a calendar year and you can earn an upgrade to Hilton Honors Gold status through the end of the next calendar year.
  • No Annual Fee.
  • Terms Apply.
  • View Rates and Fees
IHG&® Rewards Club Traveler Credit Card

on Chase's website

Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

17.49% - 24.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

Recommended Credit Score
The IHG® Rewards Club Traveler Credit Card earns rewards quickly on IHG hotel stays and eligible everyday purchases.

Pros

Earn 15 points total per $1 spent on stays at IHG hotels (5 points with the card and 10 points as an IHG Rewards Club member); 2 points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores and restaurants; and 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases. The card doesn't charge a foreign transaction fee, and there's a generous sign-up bonus. It also offers a fourth night free when you redeem points for a stay of four nights or more. Terms apply.

Cons

Unlike some other hotel credit cards, this card doesn’t offer automatic elite status. You have to spend $10,000 to earn Gold status and the perks that come with it. There's no free anniversary night benefit, and point values are relatively low.
  • Earn 60,000 bonus points after spending $2,000 on purchases within the first three months of account opening
  • No Annual Fee
  • Earn 15 points total per $1 spent when you stay at an IHG hotel
  • Earn 2 points per $1 spent on purchases at gas stations, grocery stores, and restaurants. Earn 1 point per $1 spent on all other purchases
  • No Foreign Transaction Fees
  • Fourth Reward Night Free
  • IHG Rewards Club Bonus points are redeemable at hotels such as InterContinental®, Crowne Plaza®, Kimpton®, EVEN® Hotels, Indigo® Hotels & Holiday Inn®
Barclaycard Wyndham Rewards Visa Signature Credit Card
Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

16.74% - 26.49% Variable APR

Intro APR

0% introductory APR for the first fifteen billing cycles following each balance transfer that posts to your account within 45 days of account opening

Recommended Credit Score
The Wyndham Rewards® Visa® With No Annual Fee can help you earn points quickly thanks to some useful everyday rewards categories. It also doesn't require much effort to earn an introductory offer and Gold status.

Pros

Earn 3 points per $1 spent on qualifying purchases at participating Wyndham properties; 2 points per $1 spent on eligible gas, utility and grocery store purchases; and 1 point per $1 spent on everything else. There's no foreign transaction fee, and the sign-up bonus is easy to attain: Earn 15,000 bonus points after your first purchase or balance transfer – enough to redeem for up to two free nights.

Cons

There's no free anniversary night, and you may not get to redeem points on your own schedule, as blackout dates may apply.
  • Earn 15,000 bonus points after your first purchase or balance transfer – enough to redeem for up to two free nights.
  • Earn 3 points per $1 spent on eligible purchases made at participating By Wyndham hotels, Wyndham Vacation Rental North America properties, and Wyndham timeshare properties.
  • Earn 2 points per $1 spent on eligible gas, utility and grocery store purchases (excluding Target® and Walmart®).
  • Earn 1 point per $1 spent on purchases everywhere else (excluding Wyndham timeshare down payments).
  • Get GOLD! Automatically receive a Wyndham Rewards GOLD Membership and enjoy perks like preferred room selection, late checkout and more.
Barclaycard Best Western Credit Card
Annual Fee

$0

Regular APR

20.99% - 24.99% Variable APR

Intro APR

N/A

Recommended Credit Score
The Best Western Rewards® Mastercard® offers solid rewards you can redeem for stays and a variety of other options. With automatic Gold status, you also get additional perks.

Pros

The card earns 13 points per $1 spent on Best Western stays (10 points as a Best Western Rewards member, 3 points with the card) and 2 points per $1 spent on everything else. There's a solid sign-up bonus: Earn up to 32,000 Bonus Points: Earn 16,000 bonus points after your first purchase and 16,000 bonus points on your first stay That could be enough for two free nights, depending on how you redeem. With automatic Gold status, you also get perks like a 10% points bonus, early check-in and late checkout, and more.

Cons

There's no free anniversary night benefit, and point values are only so-so.
  • No Annual Fee
  • Earn 13 points per $1 on Best Western stays (10 points as a Best Western Rewards® member, 3 points for using your Best Western Rewards® Mastercard®)
  • Earn 2 points per $1 spent everywhere else
  • Automatic Gold Elite Status

Other travel options

For PenFed Credit Union members

The PenFed Pathfinder Rewards American Express® Card is available to PenFed credit union members only, but it offers rich ongoing rewards and introductory offers. The sign-up bonus offers 25,000 bonus points by spending $2,500 in the first 90 days of account opening. The card also provides an annual travel credit and a statement credit for airport security screening programs — perks mostly found on premium travel credit cards with high annual fees.

Information about the United℠ TravelBank Card was gathered by NerdWallet and has not been provided or reviewed by the issuer of this card. 

Information related to the IHG® Rewards Club Premier Credit Card. credit card has been collected by NerdWallet and has not been reviewed or provided by the issuer of this card.

Last updated on January 13, 2020

Methodology

NerdWallet's credit cards team selects the best cards in each category based on overall consumer value. Factors in our evaluation include fees, promotional and ongoing APRs, and sign-up bonuses; for rewards cards, we consider earning and redemption rates, redemption options and redemption difficulty. A single card is eligible to be chosen in multiple categories.